Faculty Spotlight – Melissa Dymond


Northern BC –  University Hospital of Northern British Columbia (UHNBC)

Dr. Melissa Dymond is a Clinical Assistant Professor with the UBC Department of Emergency Medicine, the Emergency Medicine Discipline-Specific Site Leader (DSSL) and Academic Coordinator for undergraduate and post-graduate programs at UHNBC, and an emergency physician at the University Hospital of Northern British Columbia (UHNBC) in Prince George.

Can you share a little bit about your educational background and journey, and how you got to where you are today?

I grew up primarily in Edmonton, Alberta and completed my undergrad and medical school years at University of Alberta (UofA). I completed my training in family medicine in the UBC Prince George program before returning to Edmonton to do my emergency medicine year at UofA. After finishing that year, I returned to Prince George to start working as an emergency physician at University Hospital of Northern British Columbia (UHNBC). Time flies—I’m now nearly half way through my sixth year here!

Working in Prince George has opened up many opportunities for me with my interest in medical education. I’m currently the Emergency Medicine Discipline-Specific Site Leader (DSSL) for undergrad and postgrad as well as the Academic Coordinator for the Northern Emergency Education Program (NoEEP). 

What inspired you to work in Emergency Medicine?   

In medical school, I resisted the idea of emergency medicine. For the first two years of medical school, I thought that I would end up being an internist. But as I went through my third-year clerkship rotations, I found myself strongly drawn to the environment and culture of emergency medicine.  At UofA, we didn’t do our emergency medicine core rotation until forth year, but I loved being in the emergency department.

Something about the organized chaos of it all drew me in. I’ve always found that I connect most with the team and people who work in the emergency department. I enjoy the challenge of being the first person to assess a patient when they enter the acute care system and trying to figure out what could be causing their presenting complaints and symptoms. The variety and variable acuity keep me constantly interested in my work and striving to be the best physician for my patients and team.

What impact would you like to see your work have on patients, communities and society at large? 

Clinically, I always hope that I’m providing the safest and most efficient and effective patient care that I can. I also have a strong interest in medical education and enjoy teaching various levels and types of medical learners.  I am currently working on completing my Master of Medical Education dissertation through the University of Dundee. I hope that through my involvement in education from undergrad and postgrad to continuing medical education levels I can help learners improve and become comfortable and competent in emergency medicine. 

What excites you most about your work? What are you most proud of?

The most exciting (and humbling) aspect of emergency medicine for me is the continual learning that occurs whether from patients, learners, or colleagues. As an emergency physician, I’ve come to accept that I don’t know everything and that learning—or relearning—is going to be a constant part of my job. 

What is one piece of advice that you would give to current trainees?

Be humble and be honest. There is a lot of uncertainty in emergency medicine—it is inherent to the job that we do and with that uncertainty comes highs and lows. Always remember that there is usually someone else around to ask a question, consult on a case, or ask for support—if not in person, then by a text or phone call.

When you’re not working, where can we find you?

Like a large number of my emergency department colleagues, I enjoy getting outdoors to hike, bike, run, and ski. I’m also a member of the Peloton community *aka cult*, and you’ll find me regularly working out with my favourite instructors (#ERladydoc). Right now, when I’m not doing active things, you’ll find me either being a homebody with my best buns Epi and Adie (featured below) or travelling again—next stop to London, UK to see my fiancé who’s there now finishing his own master’s, and then to Maui for a holiday with my family!

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